The Cupertino-based company might increase the use of plastic in its various devices, the use might also go beyond internal parts. Apple has listed a new job opening for an experienced plastics material engineer.
Apple has worked with plastics before, and it currently does too. The material is used in a number of internal components for various devices. Apple’s first ever iPhone, which was released back in 2007, had a plastic back. In fact, up till the iPhone 3GS, the company used plastic for the back before switching to glass and aluminium with the iPhone 4. We might see a return of the material with iPhone 5C, Apple’s much rumored budget iPhone which is believed to be made from plastic.
There are various hints in the job description and responsibilities which can lead one to believe that the company might expand its use of plastic in the future. It wants engineers that have extensive experience in plastic material properties, part design and fabrication as well as in manufacturing in accordance with strict geometry and cosmetic quality guidelines. The “cosmetic quality” part is taken as a major hint that the engineer’s work will not be limited to designing and fabricating internal parts.
Does this mean that future products might use plastic? Its likely. If the iPhone 5C comes out next month, it may very well be refreshed the next year and it is likely to retain the plastic materials as its cheaper and helps keeps overall costs down. It remains to be seen if any other products are shifted to this material as well